We reported previously that when amphetamine is given in NOVEL test cages both its acute psychomotor activating effects (rotational behavior and locomotor activity) and the degree of sensitization are greater than when amphetamine is given in HOME cages that are physically identical to the NOVEL test cages. Since exposure to the NOVEL environment increases plasma corticosterone levels (Experiment 1) it is possible that the enhancement in the effects of amphetamine in the NOVEL condition is mediated by corticosterone. If this hypothesis is correct adrenalectomy (ADX) should abolish the difference between the HOME and NOVEL groups. This was tested in three independent experiments, in which the response (rotational behavior in Experiments 2 and 3; locomotor activity and rearing behavior in Experiment 4) to repeated injections of amphetamine was assessed in rats that underwent adrenalectomy (ADX) or a sham operation (SHAM). ADX animals received either no corticosterone replacement or one of two corticosterone replacement treatments. Adrenalectomy, with or without corticosterone replacement treatment, had no significant effect on the development of amphetamine sensitization, either in the HOME or the NOVEL environment. By contrast, the effects of adrenalectomy on the acute response to amphetamine varied depending on the behavioral measure and possibly on the dose of amphetamine (2.0 mg/kg, 3.0 mg/kg and 1.5 mg/kg IP, in Experiments 2, 3 and 4, respectively). We conclude that: (i) a stress-induced secretion of adrenal hormones is not responsible for the enhancement in sensitization to amphetamine seen in animals tested in a NOVEL environment; (ii) circulating adrenal hormones are not necessary for development of sensitization to the psychomotor activating effects of amphetamine.
CIRCULATING ADRENAL HORMONES ARE NOT NECESSARY FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF SENSITIZATION TO THE PSYCHOMOTOR ACTIVATING EFFECTS OF AMPHETAMINE / Badiani, Aldo; M., Ines Morano; Huda, Akil; Terry E., Robinson. - In: BRAIN RESEARCH. - ISSN 0006-8993. - STAMPA. - 673:1(1995), pp. 13-24. [10.1016/0006-8993(94)01365-o]